2027 Strategic Plan Updates

Update Presentations to Board of Trustees

Updates From Provost Emails to the Community

Student Success Retention and Equity Task Force (SSRE)
In collaboration with the schools and college, the SSRE is engaged in multiple efforts to raise our retention to at least 81 percent of our first-time, first-year students by fall 2024. See highlights below and a full update here:

  • Degree maps are being developed for each undergraduate major and will be available to all current and prospective students.
  • Declare Your Major Week will be held this semester to help undeclared students find an academic home.
  • High-impact practices (HIPs) are being mapped across curricular and co-curricular areas to assess their impact on retention and persistence.
  • The USF Mentor Collective is pairing first-generation students with mentors and has inspired 340 conversations in its first six months.

Latiné/x Excellence & Belonging Initiative (LE&BI)
The LE&BI Working Group aims to support the inclusion, retention, and holistic development of Latiné/x students, and to foster connection for Latiné/x faculty and staff. If you are a Latiné/x faculty or staff member and are interested in being notified of events, please join the email list. Key highlights of the group’s work to date include:

  • Launching the Casa Madriz Living Learning Community for first-year students in fall 2024, building on the legacy of the Esther Madríz Diversity Scholars
  • Developing a dashboard to support access and retention for Latiné/x students
  • Hosting a welcome event for Latiné/x students and their parents at orientation
  • Organizing a faculty, librarian, and staff social to cultivate connections among members of the Latiné/x community at USF
  • Working with the Cultural Centers and the ADEI office to offer community-wide opportunities to celebrate Latiné/x heritage

• Undergraduate Core Curriculum Redesign: Next Steps The Core Redesign Task Force continues its data collection and sharing out its findings, while developing the guidelines and values for the redesigned core curriculum. The Core Redesign Advisory Group seeks to amplify this work and widen the core conversation by facilitating community listening sessions. Upcoming opportunities include:

  • The next Community Conversation on the core redesign will explore how we can better support and advance student learning in a newly designed core curriculum.
    Monday, March 25, from 12–1 p.m. PDT online via Zoom. Register »
    (An in-person listening session is forthcoming.)
  • The Core Redesign Task Force will share its survey findings with the community. Thank you to the 222 faculty and staff and 1,239 students who completed the Core Redesign Survey last month!
    Wednesday, April 3, from 4–5 p.m. PDT online via Zoom. Register »
    (An in-person listening session is forthcoming.)

Ignatian Leadership and Holistic Success Fellowship Program
The Ignatian Leadership and Holistic Success Fellowship Program builds on the discernment and ideas developed by Strategic Plan Working Group #5 to ensure USF is an extraordinary and equitable place to work. With support from the Jesuit Foundation, the program offers opportunities for current employees to expand their skills in leadership, conflict resolution, effective management practices, and career advancement strategies.
Please join us on Tuesday, March 12, from 12:30–1:20 p.m. PDT (online via Zoom) for On Leading with Clarity, Courage, and Compassion: Mindfulness for Well-Being and Ethical Engagement at Work. The session explores how mindfulness can support us in enhancing our well-being and ability to work effectively with others, even in the face of disruption and the rapid and challenging changes in the broader world. Register »

The strategic plan calls for reimagining Jesuit education and revising USF’s curricula and co-curricula to be responsive to our students’ aspirations and to prepare them for a changing and pluralistic world. I am grateful for the work that many faculty, librarians, and staff are engaged in to redesign our curricula.

Undergraduate Core Curriculum Redesign Task Force (CRTF) Update

On Feb. 26 from 12 to 1 p.m., the task force members will share what they learned through the data collection process on the current USF core curriculum as well as core curricula at other higher education institutions. Please register here. Interested, but can't attend the presentation? Register anyway — all registrants will receive a recording of the presentation and a copy of the presentation slides.

The task force continues its work this semester with ongoing data collection during the discovery phase and wants to hear from you! Please complete this survey before Feb. 11. Your feedback will be greatly appreciated!

Community Listening Sessions

We are planning two Community Listening Sessions this spring for faculty curricular stakeholders and the wider USF community to participate in this redesign process. Please be on the lookout for more information. These sessions will be organized and facilitated by the newly formed Core Redesign Advisory Group.

Core Redesign Advisory Group

Comprised of 10 full-time faculty members representing units across the university, the Core Redesign Advisory Group is tasked with creating a community engagement plan around the core redesign process and supporting the provost’s office and Core Redesign Task Force by providing timely feedback on core-related issues. The group was formed out of a recommendation advanced by last year’s Strategic Plan Working Group #1: Reimagining Jesuit Education that sought to support the core redesign process, provide key stakeholders more opportunities for input, and increase transparency and community involvement.

The strategic plan calls on us to reimagine Jesuit education and revise USF’s curricula to respond to our students’ aspirations and prepare them for a changing and pluralistic world. Redesigning our core curriculum is a key element of evolving the education we provide our students, and I am grateful for the work of the Core Curriculum Redesign Task Force. The task force is engaged in Phase I: Discovery and has spent the fall semester examining existing data on the core curriculum and exploring general education and core models at peer institutions. In the spring semester, the task force will share its findings with the community and gather feedback on what the community hopes to see in a redesigned undergraduate core curriculum. Please be on the lookout for opportunities to share your feedback in spring!

In Phase II: Design, a working group of faculty, librarians, staff, and students will be convened to collaboratively engage in the design of the new core curriculum. Members of the working group will meet throughout the 2024–25 academic year, with an opportunity to attend the AAC&U 2024 Conference on General Education, Pedagogy, and Assessment in the spring.

To nominate yourself or a colleague for the Phase II: Design working group, please complete this form and submit it by Jan. 31, 2024. Faculty, librarians, staff, and student nominations are invited and self-nominations are accepted.

I am grateful to the working groups, the faculty, librarians and staff, and the Strategic Plan Advisory Council (SPAC) who have been working on initiatives in our community-driven strategic plan. We look forward to implementing as many of the working group recommendations as possible this year. SPAC has created a dashboard that outlines key implementation priorities, identifies lead stakeholders, and includes outcomes or key performance indicators (KPIs) to track our progress. We will be updating you regularly on the progress of the many initiatives underway, and assessing their impact in May, which will mark the end of year two of our five-year strategic plan.

Year Two Projects of Integrated Strategic Enrollment Plan

Strategic Enrollment Management’s second year of implementation of USF’s ISEP continued efforts to translate the vision, goals, and actions in the USF 2027 Strategic Plan into a roadmap for concrete enrollment gains, with a holistic focus on recruitment, retention, and student outcomes post-graduation. Below are updates on projects completed and in progress during year two, grouped into four priority areas:

New Undergraduate Enrollment

Projects here focused on growing enrollment and aid opportunities for Bay Area and international students, and improving yield:

  • Hosted the AICCU conference and individual counselors on campus, invited them to high-visibility events, and connected them with campus leadership;
  • Expanded recruitment in UAE, Kuwait, Qatar, South Korea; created new student funding partnerships with Oman, Botswana; extended brand-building and inquiry search in Africa; work in progress to create MOUs and 2+2 pathway transfer programs with other international institutions and six community colleges in California, Washington and Florida;
  • Increased local recruitment interactions by 11.5% YoY, and coordinated this year’s Northern California Jesuit Excellence Tour;
  • Established a benchmarked and replicable survey process to assess matriculants and non-matriculants YoY to inform our strategies on search buys and outreach each cycle; offered and promoted monthly financial aid webinars, with strong attendance.

Recruitment and Engagement

These projects aim to diversify lead generation and enhance our digital recruitment strategy:

  • Launched live chat functionality and online community (Unibuddy) where prospective students can engage directly with current students throughout the cycle; launched email nudge campaign triggered by tracking visitor behavior on key recruitment webpages
  • Enhanced website and worked with testing agencies to better capture parent data; enhanced virtual tour with new campus construction and embedded in key sections of the website;
  • Work in progress on enhanced segmentation and personalization of yield communications in eight high-demand majors, providing stronger proof points on academic experience, career opportunities and experiential learning;
  • Established deeper data analysis process that will allow us to better track the performance of our search buys over time.

Student Financial Services

Work here has targeted technical improvements in aid processing and payment collection, and timely information to students and families:

  • Completed SSB 9 (Banner) customizations for easier navigation through outstanding requirements and academic recovery for at-risk students;
  • Developed and launched surveys to measure satisfaction with service to students;
  • Collaborated with data team to enhance reporting and create comprehensive performance tracking dashboards;
  • Launched quarterly newsletter with strong engagement rates; work ongoing to create a comprehensive financial literacy program (in-person and virtual).

Service and Collaboration

The registrar’s office led these efforts to enhance processes for articulation, readmission, and digitized forms:

  • Completed updates to 64 articulation agreements (60 CA + 4 Seattle-area) and established thorough review process for subsequent annual updates;
  • Digitized registration and graduation forms, enhanced online veteran Yellow Ribbon enrollment; improved digital notifications re: GR/DR deficiencies; centralized process for reviewing transfer athlete’s progress to degree;
  • Work continues on improvements to the readmission application and website.